Cuore - by Edmondo de Amicis

Cuore "Cuore" is a children's book in separate episodes, written by Edmondo de Amicis in Turin and published for the first time in 1886 by Treves, Milan. It was a great success and de Amicis became the most widely read writer in Italy. Cuore, with Pinocchio, the Promessi Sposi, the Bible, the Divina Commedia, were present in most houses. Many translations were made into different languages, among them Heart in English and Herz in Germany.
The novel is structured as a diary of 9-year-old Enrico Bottini, a final year student in an elementary school. Every month there are tales told by the schoolmaster, challenging stories, with children as protagonists.

The setting is Turin after the unification of Italy, between 1878 (coronation of King Umberto I) and 1886 (publication of the book). The author wanted to teach young people civic virtues, that is, love of their country, respect for authority and for parents, the spirit of sacrifice, heroism, charity, piety, obedience and endurance of hardships, well represented in the words:

"Coraggio dunque, piccolo soldato dell'immenso esercito. I tuoi libri son le tue armi, la tua classe è la tua squadra, il campo di battaglia è la terra intera, e la vittoria è la civiltà umana. Non essere un soldato codardo, Enrico mio. - TUO PADRE

[English Translation:]"Come on then, little soldier of the immense army. Your books are your weapons, your class is your team, the battlefield is the whole earth, and victory is human civilization. Do not be a cowardly soldier, my Henry. - YOUR FATHER

Among the various film adaptations, there were the movies of 1948, directed by Duilio Coletti, starring Vittorio De Sica, and 1973, directed by Romano Scavolini, and the popular television series Cuore (1984), produced by Rai, directed by Luigi Comencini, starring Johnny Dorelli as the teacher "Maestro Perboni".

The book was a great success also because the children in the tales came from different parts of Italy, and some of them have acquired a reputation of their own, as "Dagli Appennini alle Ande" the story of Marco who embarks from Genoa to Buenos Aires to find his mother, who emigrated to Argentina and of whom nothing more was known. The tale was the basis for several films and two animated series produced in Japan: Marco (Haha wo Tazunete Sanzen Ri, 1976), (Haha wo Tazunete Sanzen Ri, 1976) in English 3000 Leagues in Search of Mother, anime series in 52 episodes.

Suggested readings

E ora venga avanti... il Piemonte, la Liguria, Lombardia, il Veneto, l'Emilia, la Toscana, l'Umbria, le Marche, il Lazio, gli Abruzzi, la Campania, la Lucania, la Puglia, la Calabria...
And now come forward... Piedmont, Liguria, Lombardy, Veneto, Emilia, Tuscany, Umbria, Marches, Latium, Abruzzi, Campania, Basilicata, Apulia, Calabria ...
- Ecco la Calabria, signorina!
-Bravo! adesso mostra la tua regione ai compagni!
- Here's Calabria, Miss!
-Bravo! now show your region to your classmates!
... la Sardegna, la Sicilia!
... Sardinia, Sicily!
Ecco! L'Italia è completa! Viva l'Italia!
That's it! Italy is complete! Long live Italy!
[canzone] Mamma fammi baciare il tricolore
simbolo della bella patria mia
Lasciamelo tenere stretto al cuore
Perché nessun possa portarlo via
Una purpurea rosa è il tricolore
Piantala nella neve immacolata
lo porterò e conservo con amore
Viva l'Italia, Viva il Tricolor! Sì!
(song) Mother let me kiss the Tricolor
symbol of my beautiful homeland
Let me keep it tight to my heart
that no one may take it away
A crimson rose is the tricolor
Plant it in the virgin snow
I'll take and retain it with love
Viva Italy, Viva the Tricolor! Yes!
Sì! Viva l'Italia! Viva il Quadrato del Quarantanovesimo!
Yes! Long live Italy! Long live the Regiment of the Forty-ninth!
Questa Italia, l'avete fatta voi bambini. Ma la vera Italia, la nostra grande Italia, l'hanno fatta i vostri padri, col loro sangue, la loro tenacia, la loro virtù.
This Italy, you made it yourselves, children. But the real Italy, our great Italy, your fathers made it, with their blood, their tenacity, their virtues.